The Health and Saftey Executive (HSE) released a bulletin announcing that a Legionella outbreak occurred in the Midlands this past month, during the COVID-19 lockdown. According to the BBC and Public Health England, six people ended up in a hospital in West Bromwich, with what is suspected to be Legionnaires’ disease. The source of the outbreak is still being investigated.
The HSE has reminded employers, the self-employed, facility managers and landlords that it is their duty to identify and control risks associated with Legionella and provided guidance on how to prevent an outbreak. Some of this guidance includes reviewing your risk assessment and running your systems before occupants re-enter a building. Most importantly, you should work with a trusted professional as soon as possible, to ensure you have taken the proper precautionary steps to prevent an outbreak in your building.
Today our local paper has reported a distressing story of a pensioner and former soldier that contracted the potentially fatal Legionnaires’ Disease from a local leisure centre. It is also reported that the leisure centre was closed for nearly 3 months while tests and decontamination work was carried out.
How could this affect you?
Comfort Services Group has put together a handy guide for employers and landlords to assist them with the Legionella responsibilities.